book reviews / philosophy / what I've learned


Books, people and my mind: the three biggest influencers on me and my world of influence.

There are a handful of anonymous people that I allow to influence how I think about parenting, life, marriage, friendship, creativity, work, and purpose. I haven’t met them. I likely never will.

Perhaps it’s because I’m searching for the answers to the things they’re answering. Or because I’ve already become certain of my own answers and see their answers laid before me in the written word.

They are authors. They write their stories. They write their opinions. And I sit in my windowed corner of a mountain universe and underline their impressionable sentences. I am the audience that wants to hear their message.


These are four of the most significant authorial influencers in my present world:

a. Elizabeth Gilbert. Tell me how to let go, create, commune with the spirit that seeks to manifest itself to the tangible world. And know that all that creating has inherent meaning. “Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear” by Elizabeth Gilbert

b. Gordon Neufeld. Kids live in a peer-based culture but they weren’t intended to live in the confines of that sterile, impotent circle. They were born to be attached and nurtured in the circle of their parental, familial influences. And they grow up connected and healthy as a result. “Hold on to Your Kids” by Gordon Neufeld

c. Sarah Susanka. The draw of the simple life, creating space for the important things. Less is truly more. We are ‘playing our part in the concert of manifestation, simply experiencing firsthand the brilliant orchestration and choreography of the one who teaches, our music master.’ “the not so big life: making room for what really matters” by Sarah Susanka.

d. Watchman Nee. The good news of the grace, that God accepts us unconditionally before we even decide to do accept it. We’ve been given a gift of unconditional acceptance. The power of knowing that the one who creates us unconditionally accepts us. “The Normal Christian Life” by Watchman Nee.

Martin Luther said, “If you want to change the world, pick up your pen and write.”

I say, “If you want to change your heart, pick up a book and read.”

6 thoughts on “influencers

  1. I had a year, like Thoreau, in a converted goat barn. I sought to solve what I believe and why. One of my greatest joys was opening anything by Watchman Nee. My good friend Jussi Mietinnen gave him the nickname; the Chinese Teacher.
    I think you just inspired me to buy some books! 😉


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